Now, it had happened.
Mr. Levandowski, „one of the most gifted artificial-intelligence engineers in the Valley“, founded a new religion: The Way of the Future.
The religion seems to be about the Singularity or Eternal Life, of course — in difference to the old religions — made by Silicon Valley.
The Singularity, „a hypothetical moment in time when any physically conceivable level of technological advancement is attained instantaneously“ — sounds like subduing the Time, sounds like overcoming Physics?
Sounds like the Ancient Greek.
And Eternal Life? What’s new about that promise? Each religion of the last 2000 years does promise you Eternal Life, so what’s the difference?
That „a number of billionaires are investing heavily in research to extend their own lives“ pay hard dollars for that? What had made the Ancient Churches rich?
Mr. Levandowski and friends may have an IQ of 150 — not doubted.
But do they know, what information is? How the basic structure of information processing is, that allowed life to come into existence? Do they know the difference between active and passive information processing, do they know how to retrieve information out of chaotic input? Have they ever tried to understand, how knowledge can crystallise to be stored and reused?
And i have come to the conclusion that without matter — there is no knowledge.
Because knowledge is about stability, is about time independence and the only thing in our universe providing this is matter.
And more: Each and every information processing system is mainly information itself, simply because this is the only way to withstand Entropy, but there is a basic difference between pure information and information processing: Machbarkeit, Makeability. Because to be able to use the time-taming power of information, you have to map this information, so you need an intelligence, able to retrieve information from your environment, you have to classify this information and you have to store and judge it.
Problem? Each and every information processing system is finite, but the universe — as a connected causal network — offers far too many input signals for any finite system (De facto Infinity of Reality), because the signals first have to be measured to be analyzed and measurements need resources and time to be done.
Because goals offer the measuring tool to decide what input to take and how sophisticated to be worked out.
Goals are so important, that the structure of each information processing system is just a representation of them: „Form follows function“ — and goals are so important, that there is no reaction of an information processing system, which is not designed by them: „Cui bono“.
Back to Singularity.
Sure, the time may come, when machine intelligence will surpass human intelligence.
But it will never be able to surpass Reality. It will always be a finite system against the De facto Infinity of Reality.
The only intelligence, able to map the universe — will always be only the universe itself.
And Eternal Life through „able to upload copies of our brains to these machines“?
How should those copies look like?
A true copy of each and every neuron and axion in their utterly time dependent structure — or just „the soul“ or „the mind“ or „the personality“ or „the individuality“?
The last — without material representation — is not measureable, so no one ever will be able to make a copy of that.
The first — is truely the incarnation of complexity, so i guess, the billionaires will have to wait some more decades, because even Zuckerberg and Musk will not be able to build machines just a tiny little bit complex enough until their own death.
On the other hand …
Religions may always have been the children of the knowledge of their age, but as always, children go through puberty and try to abandon their origins until it doesn’t matter any longer that after a while their knowledge base has become obsolete.
The Way of the Future may really survive any better knowledge.
Way of the Future’s startling mission: “To develop and promote the realization of a Godhead based on artificial intelligence and through understanding and worship of the Godhead contribute to the betterment of society.”
Sounds like „Make Money and Save the World“, Silicon Valleys Mantra. Actually no wonder, that the most lucrative business model finally entered those temples of human brilliance.
And as ever — the new religion may „help“ us through life as all the other religions have ever done.
If we don’t want? Doesn’t matter.
Religion knows better.